Monday, July 31, 2006

Invasion - Day 3

The house is empty. I can blog. The fam went to see Ant Bully. I couldn't go because I'm out of contacts and needed to see the optometrist.

I whined a little bit about my house guests yesterday to some friends at the beach. Overall, though, I am having fun, but it is a bit overwhelming. I think I will need to plan some by myself time. As an introvert, I suffer from sensory overload if I don't get time to myself. Yesterday we went to the local elementary school and played in the playground and had a blast. Raybon and my sister-in-law have some very goofy pictures of me they could probably use for blackmail. Is it Ok to play on a swing if you are going on 31?

This weekend, I did two ocean races. It was very fun, and I was pleased with my results. I did my fastest 2 mile and 1 mile times ever. I mostly relaxed and enjoyed it and wasn't afraid to push myself when I felt up to it. The 2 mile was the most fun, because it was a small group (about 80 people) as opposed to the hundreds of people in the 1 mile swim.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Our New Kitty

OK, we didn't get a cat. I'm highly allergic. This cat hangs out on our porch all the time, though. I pet it and give it milk. My parents just lost a cat that looks a lot like this one, so I am thinking this may be Shwa coming to visit me.

Should I Be Panicking?

Because I'm not. I'm doing a one mile race around the pier tomorrow. Raybon's brother, sister-in-law, two nieces, and nephew are coming tonight to stay with us for a week+. We have no food in the fridge. I need to vacuum the guest room and get other things prepared. It hasn't even phased me. No, I'm not on anti-anxiety medication. What is up? Has my "Things to Do Everyday for the Rest of My Life" checklist cured my chronic anxiety? Did last weekend go so well, I've finally learned to be optimistic?

About the swim: I hope I stay as calm about it as I am. Tahoe was so lovely, I hope it taught me something about racing. I swam as hard as I could, without getting a time, and was happy with my race. I think just doing your best and training hard should be enough. Going a little faster should just be a bonus reward.

About the fam: Kids are wonderful, but a lot of work. Don't be surprised, friends, if I call you for an emergency cafe break. I may need a little escape from being Auntie Jungle Gym. Maybe I'll find some space in the ocean this week, too. Hannah and Leah and Levi are wonderful. In a way, they deserve credit for teaching me to love swimming, because when they came to visit us here the first time, I realized how much I loved swimming as something I'm doing just for me.

I'm looking forward to having them here, honestly. They are sweetie pies who love me, and there is nothing in this world like love from a child. Their Mom will be here this time, so I won't have to be a disciplinarian. It's nice just being the Aunt.

English Channel Swim For Cancer

As I mentioned in a previous post, my teammate Hendrik is swimming the English Channel in September, and is using his swim as a fundraiser for WomenCARE, a cancer support organization in Flip Flop. I've been working on his website, and it is now ready to take online donations. Please give if you feel moved.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

The Problem with Heroes

Floyd Landis Tests Positive for Drug Use

I'm not heart broken. I have enough real life heroes, who I know as being fallible people, to not care much if Floyd Landis isn't everything I hoped he was.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

More Fortune Cookie Fun

I got home from Tahoe last night to find two nice surprises. The first, and best, was a comic by Camille waiting for us on our counter. She wrote a comic for Eleven and I about us getting her to come swim and saving her eyeballs.

The other surprise was a message on my answering machine. I won a $25.00 gift certificate from the Chinese restaurant I went to with E.K. that I talked about in my Fortune Cookie post. I filled out a business card and put it in a jar for a drawing while I waited for E.K. Could this be the good news to come from me from far away in my fortune? If so, what is the thing that I think is a secret, but never has been one?

Monday, July 24, 2006

My Other Newest Hero

I don’t really need a big celebrity professional athlete as a hero when I have my awesome teammates, but I am totally impressed with Floyd Landis. Not just because of his tour win, but because of his positive attitude, humility, and simple lifestyle. I know he isn’t a Mennonite anymore, but he still carries on the caring attitude towards others and humility that he was raised with. He also believe in “purification through suffering”, which is part of what I love about athleticism. I’m so sick of jocks who are just in to impress others and feed their egos. I think when I first became an swimmer three years ago, I thought that all athletes were like Floyd and my Trans-Tahoe teammates, which is unfortunately not the case. In my mind, Floyd has everything which makes him an athlete instead of just a jock. Allow me to come up with my own dictionary. An athlete is someone who is interested in self-improvement through performance goals. A jock is someone who is in it to impress others, get laid, and feel superior to everyone around them.

I struck out the last part of my post after leaving it up for a while, because I don't see how it is constructive to divide people into two separate groups and label them as something good and bad. Definitions like the ones I gave up above are only helpful if they aid us in understanding our own motivations. We're all jocks and we're all athletes. There are probably people who exemplify one quality more than another, but a lot of us are somewhere in between. And really, is trying to impress others so bad? Praise from others is a pretty basic need, I think. And I love being able to provide that for my friends and teammates, it's one of my favorite things about sports. What is a friend for, if not to listen to you brag? And the getting laid part... I dunno. On the one hand, it's understandable: if you're not getting any, it seems like a pretty big deal. On the other hand...men are dogs, and as a woman who is sick of getting hit on and ogled, it's hard for me to not throw some men into the category of perv. I'm not talking about harmless flirting or attraction, I'm talking about strange guys winking at me while I deck change or guys I just met turning a friendly pat on the shoulder to an opportunity to brush their hands against my rear. I don't have the grace at this point to try to be understanding of this behavior. I'm lucky I have enough decent men in my life that I can try to be more understanding, and not let it color my interactions with all men. Still, as a woman, I'm starting to learn that a little suspicion in this area might not be the worst thing in the world. I just hope it doesn't make me bitter.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Almost Perfect Day

Months ago, a swimmer in my club, Jenny, started trying to put together a team for this years Trans-Tahoe relay. The race goes from Sand Harbor Beach to Skylandia Beach, a distance of 11.5 miles (although my GIS software says it is only 9.6). Six people swim in a relay, each doing a 30 minute leg, a 15 minutes leg, and a 10 minute leg (or less than that if they finish before everyone does their 10 minutes legs.) She sent out an email to a bunch of people, and only one friend of hers and I responded. Jenny had a baby boy in November. When she started putting the team together, she thought things would get easier with the baby and she’d have time to train. But her little Reefy didn’t allow her much time to train, and doesn’t tolerate rides in the car, so she had to back out. I still wanted to do it, and had already recruited Eleven, so I invited Jenny’s other friend to join us, and kept looking for people to swim with us. Jenny’s friend never responded to my invite, so I had to find four more people.

My Mom was a little nervous about swimming, but had actually mentioned possibly wanting to do the swim a few times. At first she just wanted to be an alternate, but since she seemed more interested than anyone else, I put her on the main team.

I asked V. to swim with, and she enthusiastically said yes, and invited her Dad to be on our team.

Oceana was one of the first people I asked to swim the relay with us, but she was the last to join. When I first asked her, I had no idea she was already 3 months pregnant. I had also asked her to swim the Pier to Pier with me unofficially, so she said “Let’s get coffee.” She explained to me her reason for not wanting to do either swim. After about a month, she decided it would actually be fine to swim Tahoe 7.5 months pregnant, but we should maybe have an alternate lined up.

Six people! We had a team! Now all we needed was a boat and somewhere to stay.

V. and her family have a house up here in Tahoe, which provided a place for people to crash at. V. mentioned that her Dad was a very sociable kind of guy, and could probably find us a boat just by hanging out at the dock and asking someone. This worked out incredibly well. He found a wonderful family (John, Margie, and their teenage son Joe) to take us across the lake in their beautiful, spacious boat.

My Mom got all excited about the race, and invited our whole family to come up. She rented a very nice house up here. My older brother, his wife, my two nieces, my older sister, and my Dad all showed up to hang out and cheer us on.

We all met on Friday night, the night before the race, for a nice dinner at V.’s family’s house. The food and company were both very nice. Afterwards, we headed to the Captain’s meeting and picked up our caps and T-Shirts. Some of us were disappointed that “Mutated Ill-Tempered Sea Bass with Laser Beams on Their Heads” didn’t win the team name competition. They had a list of what they felt were the best names up on a board, almost all of which were lewd. The winner was “Off Constantly”, which they explained “You may not win, but at least for consolation, you’ll beat Off Constantly.” Eleven and I looked at each other, and she said “Now we know why we didn’t win.” I answered, a little snottily, “We should have gone dirty.”
"Off Constantly" is a little clever, and not just dirty, but I really think lewdness satisfied a contest requirement.

We found out at the team meeting that the first swimmer would have to walk from the dock to the beach, about 20 minutes. We originally had picked Oceana as out first swimmer, because we figured her partner N-Dawg would be able to recognize her stroke, because she has supported her in a kayak on some of her long swims. Oceana didn’t think she could do the 20 minute walk 7.5 months pregnant, so I volunteered to be the first swimmer.

As I mentioned earlier, I was very nervous about this race. I think from the beginning, being the team captain, and never having done the race before, it was a little bit of pressure. There were so many things, I envisioned going wrong. What if we couldn’t finish the swim in the 6 hour allotted time? What if two people dropped out at the last minute? What if someone got hypothermia? What if Oceana went into labor in the middle of the lake? What if we got really bored? What if someone got heat stroke? Would my back start hurting from sitting too much? What if Oceana had trouble climbing back into the boat? What if we have trouble navigating to the finish line? What if we had trouble finding the first swimmer (me)?

None of my “What-If’s” happened. Yesterday was amazing. I don't think the swim could possibly have gone better than it did. The weather was perfect. At the pre-race meeting last night, the guy from the Olympic Club giving the talk said they'd never had warmer water. Friday night we had the most amazing, beautiful lightening storm over the lake, but when we woke up this morning the sky was clear and blue. It was pleasantly cool. Nobody got too hot or too cold.

I woke up really early yesterday morning and painted my arms and back with green and white zinc oxide, so I would be distinctive (Eleven’s idea). I was pretty nervous about being the first swimmer. I forgot my cap and goggles at home, but fortunately realized it not too long after we left the house. After that happened, my Mom said she was relieved. She said we got whatever bad that was going to happen out of the way early on. She was right. The rest of the day was perfect.

Raybon drove my mom and me over to Sand Harbor Beach to meet the rest of our teammates. I left my mom at the dock waiting for the boat, and walked alone over to the starting area. I was pretty nervous about being the first swimmer, because my boat would have to find me in a race with over 100 teams in the water. Raybon found me at the starting area and saw me off. Each team was given a number, and we lined up on the beach according to our numbers. My number was really high, and placed me on the far left side of the beach. I wasn't sure which way to go. I thought I was supposed to veer right at the beginning to start heading the right direction towards Skylandia Beach, but I wanted to be one of the leftmost swimmers so that my boat would find me easily. They had no problems finding me at all. Raybon called them with his cell phone and told them where I started and which direction I was headed. I pretty much swam right up to the boat.

After that the hard part was over. Eleven and I were worried about getting bored, but it was nothing but a good time. The weather was so pleasant, and the water was so beautiful, and everyone was nice and supportive. We were all a little worried about making the 6 hour cutoff time, but we came in around 5 and half hours. It was clear after everyone swam their first leg that we would make it.

Things turned out so unbelievably well, it was an answer to my prayers. It turned that me being the first swimmer was a lucky decision, because when Oceana got in to do her leg, she was nervous and went out really fast, and had to get out after 10 minutes. If this had happened before she found the boat, it would have been disastrous. V.'s dad got in after her and did his half hour leg. She felt better and we reassured her that she would be fine if she just slowed down a little. She got in after him and swam for 20 minutes to finish up her half hour leg without any problems. The 15 minute and 10 minute legs went off without a hitch for the most part. My mom was set to be the swimmer to take us into shore, but she panicked because her goggles fogged up. Her stroke got sloppy and when I asked her if she was Ok, she said no. Oceana got in and finished the race for her. We all thought it was pretty cool to have a 7.5 month pregnant woman finish our race. I also thought it was nice that since someone had to takeover her leg for a while, that she was able to take over someone else’s. As we rounded the buoy that would take us into shore, we all jumped in the water to finish the race (including my Mom.) V. and I did an I.M. and then did fly into shore. I felt like showing off, and she was kind enough to go along with me.

My mom is my new hero. I love watching people do things that are challenging for them. She was very nervous yesterday. Before she did her first leg, she sat alone at the end of the boat focusing on her swim. She swam very strongly. After each leg of her swim, she was out of breath. I found this to be very inspiring, so I swam my 15 and 10 minute legs hard enough that I would be out of breath afterwards. Everyone did really well. We all cheered for each other, swam as hard as we could, and were understanding about all of the little mishaps (for me, veering off in the wrong direction more than once.) This was my best competitive swimming experience in a while. I think it was my best since my first year when open water swimming was completely new to me. Everything about it was exactly what I think Masters swimming should be all about. As Eleven pointed out, with two parent/child pairs on the boat (three if you can't Oceana and her baby), we were definitely the fit for life team. No one on our team was whiny or competitive or pushy. We all worked hard, ands supported everyone else in working hard.

I was the team captain, and everyone kept thanking me for organizing the team, but I felt kind of like the con artist in the story about Stone Soup. Everyone contributed as much or more than I did, I just asked people to do it with me. V's dad got us people to take us across the lake. The family that took us in our boat were super cool people. They cheered for us, and did a perfect job piloting their big beautiful boat. Oceana brought her experience from last years swim, and was the best at keeping everyone on it about signaling people about how much time we had left on their legs. I'm not sure if it was V or her dad who had the idea of painting different boards with different colors to signal the amount of time left in everyone's swim. Eleven came up with the zinc oxide idea for finding me. Raybon was great about making sure everyone was where they needed to be at the start of the race, cheering us all on at the end, taking pictures, and helping the boat to find me. Everyone brought so much positive energy to this event. I don't think I could have asked for a better group of people to swim with. Thank you all!

What kind of lurker are you?

From wikipedia.com:

Malevolent lurkers

Some lurkers may attempt to heavily involve themselves in the administration of a moderated forum by repeatedly alerting moderators to comments which offend their political or moral point of view, but refrain from participating in the discussion directly. Some of these lurkers occasionally post comments praising moderators, usually in a vain effort to curry favor.

Benign lurkers

Most lurkers however, may simply be somewhat shy, not feeling adequately educated on a given topic, or just not good at expressing their thoughts in written form on email lists. They enjoy reading others posts and responses to them, but refrain from adding their own contributions. They have been known to send comments off-list, to individual posters, frequently positive.

Constructive lurkers

The constructive lurker is a person who regularly reads online forums but rarely posts. These individuals may have a high degree of sophistication within the topic of any given forum, but lack the time or willingness to post the detailed replies they feel that the topic at hand deserves. Lurkers of this sort are not shy about posting, but instead prefer not to start a discussion they do not have the time to finish. When these lurkers do post, they often provide well thought-out and detailed contributions to the discussion at hand. A constructive lurker is often a veteran of several previous online discussion forums. Having been involved in many heated online discussions in the past these lurkers are often willing to allow the more active forum members to hash out the obvious and may only contribute when the discussion takes a novel turn.

Smart-Ass lurkers

The "smart-ass lurker" is a person who watches a discussion take place, only to intervene with a derisive comment or "gotcha" gag-link that sends up the active participants (from a smug, detached position).

Friday, July 21, 2006

Night Before Trans-Tahoe

I got in bed a little while ago, but I can't sleep. Deja vu to my pre-Berryessa blog.

Today was a longish day. I hope no one takes this the wrong way when reading this or feels bad, but lately I've felt like my life is a constant negotiation between what other people want from me. I know this has more to do with me than anyone else. No one has been too demanding, but deep down inside I am a people pleaser. There are so many people here at Tahoe that I care about, it is hard for me to feel like I'm attending to everyone's needs. I want to break this bad habit of mine.

My mom, my older brother, my sister-in-law, my two nieces, and my husband went to King's Beach to swim and then head to a pre-race dinner at V.'s family's place. I had picked up my sister from the Reno Airport earlier, and she had only 1 hour of sleep so she was taking a nap while we left. I had forgot to give her instructions on how to get to V's. When she woke up she felt a little abandoned. I finally got in touch with her through the spotty reception on my cell. I apologized and explained later on that I was too wrapped up in trying to make everyone around me happy, so I forgot about her needs. My Dad told me to never apologize to anyone. I asked him "What if I'm a jerk?" He told me, "You're never a jerk. Don't apologize for yourself. You don't owe anyone anything. You may occasionally need to apologize to your husband, but that's it." I think I really needed to hear that. I feel guilty even when people aren't trying to make me feel that way, and it makes me very vulnerable to people who try to make me feel guilty.

On the bright side, Tahoe is absolutely beautiful. I think it may very well be the nicest water I've ever swam in. It's exactly the right temperature and the clarity and color are beautiful. I don't miss the ocean's saltiness. I think tomorrow will be a lovely experience. I'm nervous, especially about being the first swimmer, but I know everything will work out in the end. I'm swimming with some of the nicest people I've ever met. I'm really lucky to have such great people in my life. We'll all have a great time and make the best of it no matter what.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Lurkers, come out come out wherever you are!

I'm kind of curious whether there are people who read my blog and I don't know about it. I know that people who comment read it, but other than that I really don't know. If you are a reader who hasn't commented, I'd kind of like to know.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

So Far, So Good

I've been doing the no sugar thing for over a week now, and I feel pretty good. It's definitely worth it. Nothing tastes so good that it is worth a case of the mean reds.

Yesterday I put my list of "Things to Do Everyday for the Rest of My Life" in my Palm as a checklist to be repeated everyday. I did almost everything on the list yesterday. It felt really good to check things off. I always worry that I forgot to do something, or that I didn't do the things I did well enough, so checking them off cleared my head and made me felt accomplished. I didn't get mad at myself for not doing the things I didn't manage to do. My Freudian ego was a nice teacher who realized I tried my best, and gave me full credit anyway.

This weekend I am doing the Tran-Tahoe relay with my mom, Oceana, Eleven, V., and V.'s Dad. People keep asking me if I'm excited or looking forward to it, and I feel a little puzzled and say "No." This is my usual response to when people ask me if I'm excited about something that is going to happen in the future. I always thought this was just a weird thing about me, but I'm realizing that is my Eeyore nature. There are a myriad of things that could go wrong. I think there is part of me that expects the worse, so I'll be braced for it. I've decided that this weekend will be an exercise in relentless optimism. Things may go wrong, but I'm determined to have a good time anyways. Cold weather, weird social interactions, obstacles of all sorts be damned. Even if the swim gets canceled, I'll move on and just make the best of it.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Modest Swimwear

Raybon sent me this website: http://www.wholesomewear.com/page-4.html

It's a good thing they didn't make this when I was a kid. I'm sure my parents would have made me wear it to swim practice.

Things to Do Everyday for the Rest of My Life

These are the kind of things I suck at, but they are probably more important than my list of things to do before I die. I pretty much have to do them in order to accomplish the the things on that other list anyways.

1. Brush and floss my teeth (I do brush them, but flossing isn't done every day.)
2. Drink 6-8 glasses of water
3. Take a multi-vitamin, an iron supplement (I'm prone to anemia), and fish oil (natural anti-inflammatory, and I'm prone to inflammation.)
4. Pray for my enemies
5. Pray for my loved ones
6. Count my blessings
7. Tell those closest to me I love them.
8. Stretch (I have chronically tight muscles)
9. Eat 6 servings of fruit and vegetables (that might be too much to ask, but it should be my goal)
10. Eat a little protein at every meal
11. Bathe. I've got this one down, fortunately.
12. Clean up all of the messes I made that day, and make at least one thing cleaner than how I found it.
13. Water the plants.
14. Make sure those closest to me are cared for.
15. Do my hair.
16. Dress decently.
17. Wear sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat.

That is a lot to think about. It seems almost like a full time job to me, just getting by and taking care of myself. I think I'll put this list in chronological order and come up with a routine.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Relaxing Sunday

I've been feeling a bit better lately, and today was especially nice. I went for a swim in the ocean from the pier to the lighthouse along the buoys, with Raybon accompanying me in a kayak. It was quite cold and a little choppy, and there are a few bumps to smooth out in our swimmer/paddler relationship, but I think I took away from it a little more optimism about our marriage. I got annoyed at Raybon, but he was very patient with my bitchiness. I hope in the end this will be an enjoyable activity we can share together, because I'm learning having activities in common is important. There are a lot of theories about how to make relationships work, but I think spending time together is important, and it helps if you have something you both enjoy doing together.

My moods have been more balanced since I stopped eating sugar. I'm making it a priority in my life to find happiness and balance above all else, and this is part of the plan. I found a book at Bookshop called "Potatoes not Prozac" while I went through the Non-fiction used books. I thought this was funny, because I usually ignore the non-fiction section of the used books, and I found a book about sugar addiction, compulsive behavior and depression after I had blogged on the subject. I know, I know, I said I was done with omens and magical thinking. I can think it is interesting anyway, can't I? Sometimes life falls together very nicely. I bought the book. I hope it will teach me more about balancing my blood sugar.

I started drinking chocolate milk as a recovery drink again. I think the protein and complex sugars in milk make it OK for me to drink. On Friday I let my blood sugar level get too low because I didn't want to drink the chocolate milk I carry around in my trunk for recovery, and I think in the end this made me feel worse rather than better. This is all an experiment, and I hope I can stay disciplined, and not let my exceptions grow into excuses.

Revisions to my Seven Lists of Seven

See previous post

Seven things to do before I die:

1. Achieve inner peace
2. Learn to love as best I can
3. Raise a happy child
4. Find an occupation I can put my heart into
5. Do some sort of significant long distance swim (10K or greater)

I'm leaving it at 5 for now, because those came straight from my heart. I don't want to force two more.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Me and Leah

This is a picture of me and my niece at Disneyland from a couple of years ago. Eleven and I were talking about wanting kids, and I told her about this picture and how happy I look in it. She told me I should post it, so here it is. Raybon has this on his computer desktop.

TMI

I had an interesting talk with a friend of mine recently. I'm not sure if she wants me to reveal her identity, so I'll leave her name out, and she can comment on it if she wants. She was sexually harassed by a coworker of hers. He went into details about his sexual problems with his girlfriend in the most graphic way possible. Just about as graphic as you can possibly imagine.

Why do people do this? This is an extreme example of the kind of thing that bothers me. Occasionally people will go into more detail about their sex lives than I care to hear about. I want to be respectful of them, and open minded, but I can't help that it bothers me. I'm not a total prude. If a good friend tells me about her sex life, even in intimate details, I don't mind at all. But when someone who I am not close to starts to talk to me about it, it really bothers me. A little over a month ago, I was trapped alone with a woman I just met going on and on about her sex life with a friend of mine.

The friend I talked to recently and I had similar experiences. We just don't know how to tell people to stop talking about it. We both are open minded people who want to be good listeners and non-judgmental. So we put up with it in as nice a way as possible, while all the while our stomachs are in knots. We decided the best solution is just to say "TMI" jokingly. That way we don’t come across as judgemental, but we communicate that we don’t want to hear more.

This really isn’t entirely about differences in values. If someone I'm close to has different sexual values than me and wants to tell me about it, that is actually fine with me. In fact, I find it interesting, because I find the differences in other people's experiences of the world intriguing, and like it or not, sex is a big part of who we all are. It's just too personal when it comes from a stranger. There are people like me who just don't want to know the details of everyone’s sex lives, and find it mildly abusive when they have to hear about it. I think that being sensitive and careful to how the other person might be taking it is just good manners. When in doubt, don't overshare. I know I occasionally have a problem with oversharing. Believe it or not, there are people even more sensitive than I am, and I've probably crossed lines that I shouldn't have. I think it is just like a lot of other things in life, you have to understand people as best you can, and be sensitive to the kinds of issues that might make people upset.

That said, there isn’t a single person who might be reading this blog who has spoiled his or her friedship with me. I hope no one is offended or takes this the wrong way. It’s a complicated world, and we’re all trying to navigate our way through all the differences in personalities, temperaments, religions, cultures, and values. We’re all bound to offend people occasionally as we try to figure out what other people are all about. So when we’re offended, we shouldn’t be embarrassed about being offended. We should communicate in as nice a way as possible that we don’t want to hear about it, and then just try to forget about it once it stops.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

:(

I'm bummed. I just emailed 007, Hendrik, and Joel that I'm backing out of an unofficial 10K Pier to Pier swim we were thinking about doing. I'm already starting to regret it, but I think it is best. I have other commitments I have to attend to, and swimming it would get in the way. When I hit send on the email, I felt dreadful. Is that a sign that you aren't supposed to do something? Usually when I feel that way, it turns out my gut is right. Maybe I should have slept on it.

I'm Off Sugar

At the suggestion of my mother, I've given up sugar. Even before she suggested it, I talked to Raybon about doing it. Seems like a good idea. I've been really moody lately, and feel really good after eating sweets. I conk out after eating even medium sized meals. I think my insulin levels are out of whack right now. My mom gave up sugar when she was around my age. I hope it helps. Poor Raybon has been suffering my moods quite a bit lately. I wasn't so bad before my surgery. I think it threw my system out of whack.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Workout Links

I'm pretty much 100% and trying to incorporate running, core exercises, and weight training back into my routine. I love the World Wide Web. It is my guide to life. I look to it for advice on everything: marriage, work, fitness. Here are some sites that have I have been using for training:

Couch to 5K program at coolrunning.com

Fitness Makeover: Weight-train to build speed, not bulk

Lateral Pulldown Exercise with Therabands (Amongst other cool exercises you can do at home)

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Happy

I'm happy. For just this moment I feel content. Had lunch with E.K., talked to my mom, snuggled with my puppy dog, swam with 007, talked to Snoopy, ate a burrito. I've had some fierce mean reds and blues lately, so I just wanted to document this moment of happiness and contentment.

Fortune Cookie


I went out to lunch with E.K. today. We got chinese. I got there before her and waited a while. While I waited, the people at the table next to me were finishing up. I wasn't really listening to their conversation, but I heard one of them read his fortune cookie "You think that it is a secret, but it never has been one." They thought it was funny, and it didn't make any sense. I exclaimed "Oh my gosh! Can I have it?" See my previous post about my Deepest, Darkest Secret. I stuck it under my cell phone protector.

OK, I'm done with magical thinking and omens. I don't even want to think about why the first fortune cookie I come across since I posted that was the one I posted about. The top fortune in the picture is the one from the cookie I got.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Willow is a Genius

Last night, Raybon and I talked about our plans for today, and decided we'd go for a walk together in the morning. This morning, Willow is acting all excited, like she knows all about it. We didn't even talk about it this morning. She somehow remembers that we talked about it last night.

Clerks II

Have you seen the previews for this? When I first saw this, all I could think was "sellout." I couldn't believe Kevin Smith was doing a sequel. Supposedly he had closed the book on his ViewAskewniverse with Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (if you watch past the closing credits, they show Alanis Morissette as the God from Dogma actually closing the book.) He felt like he was done with those characters and wanted to move on. He went on to make Jersey Girl, which was really a mediocre movie, full of all kinds of romcom parent/child cliches, with a Kevin Smith-y kind of spin on it. It got so-so reviews and not great box office. When I saw the preview I thought, "What a sellout. He given up on moving on and growing as a writer/director because of one failure of a movie. Now he's rehashing his previous success in the most obvious of ways, with a sequel."

OK, I'm not posting this so much to malign Kevin Smith or promote his movie, but to give you a window on to how my brain works. I make up little stories in my head about people to explain their behavior, and lots of times it's snotty and judgemental. Fortunately, sometimes I can step back and say "Shut up, Nori. You have no idea what the hell you are talking about. You don't know why people are doing what they are doing, and your snotty explanation and assumption only says something about you, not them." I googled Clerks II, and as it turns out, it received an 8 minute standing ovation at Cannes. And his motivation for making another ViewAskewniverse movie was that he promised Jason Mewes that if he got off drugs, he would make another Jay and Silent Bob movie. To my credit, I realized I was being a snot even before I googled it, and that is why I am up at 4:30 in the morning blogging, not because I am an obsessive Kevin Smith fan, but because I wanted to document on my blog the fact that I am trying to release myself from that mental tendency I have.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

English Channel Swim for Cancer

One of the men in my swimming club, Hendrik, is swimming the English Channel at the beginning of September. I've been working on his website lately, which I think has been taking over either my urge to blog or my time blogging. The website is at http://www.channelswimforcancer.org

He is doing the swim to raise money for WomenCARE, a support organization for women with cancer in Flip Flop. See the link above for more information. I'm going to work on making it possible for people to make donations online, although if you can, please use the information on the site to send a check, because there will be a small amount of overhead with the online donations (but please use the online donation if finding your checkbook, an envelope and a stamp is at all a hassle.)

It's been fun working on his website. I hope that it will help him a little bit in this huge effort of his. I think I should do more volunteer work. It's been really rewarding, and has helped me get my minds off my own little tiny problems.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Good Omen of Ice Cream

On Saturday, Oxy and I hung out at the beach while Raybon kayaked. Oxy was kind enough to put up with me and my depressing mood. While we were there, an ice cream truck stopped by. Oxy was annoyed by its song, Turkey in the Straw. I wasn't. I like ice cream trucks. For some reason, though, they never came down my street where I grew up. They'd stop on the next street over, but never mine. It wouldn't have mattered much if they did. We weren't rich, and my mom was a health nut, and she hated wasting money on sugar. I told Oxy about this, nostalgically and wistfully.

Just a minute ago, I heard Turkey in the Straw playing on my street. This has never happened before, here at our home in the Flip Flop Mountains. I ran up to the truck and got a vanilla ice cream sandwich for Raybon and a drumstick for me. The lady was very friendly, and didn't seem amused by my silly 30 year old self, just happy that I was buying ice cream. I'm taking it as a good omen. I'll take what I can get.

Addendum to Sunday's Post

The friend who flaked on me on Sunday actually had a really good explanation. She only gave me a partial explanation at first on my answering machine, which is why I was mad, but she also had a good explanation for only giving me a partial explanation. That makes me happy. She's a good friend, and I don't like thinking less of our friendship. Sorry, that's all you get to hear about the story.

I went to the beach and did just a lap yesterday. I wore my workout bikini. A couple of other women from my team were there. One of them had a bikini with the same print I had on, also not a workout bikini. She is a little older than me, and has a teenage son. I told her how I was embarassed about wearing my bikini yesterday, and she said I shouldn't be, it's the beach. That made me feel a lot better.

Sunday was just a crappy day (except for my Camille hangout time.) Here's hoping for a better one today.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Bikini

I swam 5000 yards this morning in the ocean alone. It was cold and foggy and not as much fun as my Friday swim. I would have swam in the sunshine later in the day, but someone, whose name will not be mentioned because I love her despite what happened, wanted to swim in the morning. She flaked on me. Arrgh. If you my flakey friend are reading this blog, please know I love you, but we must talk.

Luckily, Camille text messaged me and brought me out into the sunshine for a nice relaxing swim out to buoy #4. It was sunny and the water was just warm enough to be inviting and just cold enough to be invigorating. She cheered me up with her spontaneity and enjoyment of the water.

I wore a bikini I've never worn outside of Hawaii. I don't know what I was thinking. I cleared it with my hubby Raybon, and he said it was fine. My workout bikini was wet from this morning, and I figured I'd just splash around with Camille, so I might as well wear it. I normally wouldn't wear it swimming, but I figured since I'm a little faster than Camille, I could spend extra effort making sure it wouldn't fall off. It didn't, but I don't think I'll ever wear it again. When 007 saw me in it she said "That's not a workout bikini." I felt very embarrassed, like when I was 19 and I bought a mini skirt. I wore it once and never wore it again. I couldn't even look at the guys from my club who were at the beach. I see other girls wearing them, so I figured it was OK. I mean it's the beach, it should be OK right? I can't decide whether I'm a skank or a prude. What are the rules for beach attire for 30 year old married women?

All You Need is Love

My alternate candidate for happy, non-vacuous song.

All You Need Is Love
The Beatles (Lennon/McCartney)


Love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love.
There's nothing you can do that can't be done.
Nothing you can sing that can't be sung.
Nothing you can say but you can learn how to play the game
It's easy.
There's nothing you can make that can't be made.
No one you can save that can't be saved.
Nothing you can do but you can learn how to be in time
It's easy.
All you need is love, all you need is love,
All you need is love, love, love is all you need.
Love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love.
All you need is love, all you need is love,
All you need is love, love, love is all you need.
There's nothing you can know that isn't known.
Nothing you can see that isn't shown.
Nowhere you can be that isn't where you're meant to be.
It's easy.
All you need is love, all you need is love,
All you need is love, love, love is all you need.
All you need is love (all together now)
All you need is love (everybody)
All you need is love, love, love is all you need.